Here are some useful ceiling fan calculators that I have created over the past several years that are being used in various places on our website. I thought it might be a good idea to consolidate them all on a single page.
Operational Cost Calculator(Instructions/Details)
Basic Help: Our operational cost calculator estimates how much it will cost to operate the ceiling fan. By default, the calculator assumes that you will leave your fan running 24 hours a day for the entire year (which is not very likely to be accurate), so you will want to change the hours and days to be more in line with how often you think you will use the fan. The calculator also defaults to the average cost per kWh of electricity in the USA. You can change this to use the average cost of electricity in your state, although this may vary widely from city to city. For the most accurate calculation, manually enter the actual cost/kWh shown on your utility bill. The wattage of the fan is already included (if it is known), but you can change it if you wish to see how the wattage affects the cost.
Fans with lights: Calculations are performed without lights by default. If you add a light fixture to the fan, you can add the wattage of the fixture to the wattage of the fan to perform calculations with the lights on. In some cases, when a light fixture of known wattage is included with the fan, the option to calculate with or without lights will show automatically. The light fixture on a ceiling fan almost always uses substantially more electricity than the fan motor, so it is very important to take that into account when comparing the overall operational cost between various ceiling fans
CFM -vs- Efficiency: CFM is KING! It is more important to buy a fan with higher CFMs than it is to buy a fan that uses less electricity. The highest wattage consumed by the most energy guzzling ceiling fan on our website is about 120 watts. So if you input 120 as the fan watts and run our calculator, you will see that it still costs less than 2 cents per hour to operate the most energy guzzling ceiling fan in most states. You will get more savings with a higher CFM fan than a lower Wattage fan because if your fan moves more air you will be able to raise your thermostat to a higher degree. Raising your thermostat by 10 degrees can save you up to 40% on your cooling bills. Choosing a less powerful fan because it uses less electricity can be the worst mistake you can make because it will not cool you off enough to allow you to raise your thermostat to a high enough level without becoming uncomfortable. This is why CFM is so much more important to consider than Wattage.
When comparing fans of different sizes with varying CFMs, it is important to consider the wind speed in order to know which fans will make you feel cooler. Read more about Ceiling Fan Wind Speed here!
The average kWh by state used by our calculator is derived from information published by the US Government Department of Energy as of May 2009. Your actual cost may differ from this. Again, refer to your utility bill for your most recent kWh cost.
Enter the overall blade span of any fan and click calculate to determine the maximum RPM that any size fan can operate.
Details: Federal regulations limit the maximum RPM at which a ceiling fan safely operate in order to prevent potential bodily harm. The limitations are based on the above 2 blade thicknesses. Blades that are 1/8" thick and less than 3/8" thick must run slower than blades that are 3/8" thick or more. No residential ceiling fans are allowed to have blades less than 1/8" thick. Any ceiling fan that does not meet the maximum RPM requirement cannot be installed less than 10 feet from the floor, or must be enclosed in a cage.
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